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HSL investigation into ICL Plastics explosion

Author : John Hodges

17 November 2009

A paper at the HazardEx conference given by John Hodges from the HSL will describe the technical aspects of the on-site and off-site investigation of the ICL Plastics explosion. The HSL worked closely with HSE and the Strathclyde Police to uncover the cause of the explosion and subsequent collapse of the building.

The aftermath of the ICL Plastics explosion
The aftermath of the ICL Plastics explosion

At approximately twelve noon, on 11th May 2004 an explosion occurred at the Grovepark Mills premises of ICL Plastics Ltd, in the Maryhill district of Glasgow. This explosion was caused by leakage of LPG into the building basement, which then ignited causing an explosion subsequent collapse of the building, resulting in a number of deaths.

The presentation will describe some of the issues associated with this investigation relating to the nature of the building’s construction and its subsequent collapse. It describes how the expertise from a broad range of disciplines from across HSL, HSE and outside combined to work through the thousands of tons of rubble at the site and gather the evidence required to understand the cause of the incident.

This is a paper being presented at the HazardEx 2010 conference

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